Showers Pass Cloudburst Jacket: At The Finish

Showers Pass Cloudburst Jacket: At The Finishby Guitar Ted

Showers Pass Cloudburst Jacket
Image courtesy of Showers Pass

Showers Pass, a highly regarded outerwear company known for their rain gear, announced a new jacket, called the Cloudburst, last February which we introduced in this post. Since then I have been wearing it regularly as an outer jacket for the cooler transitional weather we’ve had. Unfortunately there hasn’t been much for rain, but I was able to get a read on this jacket’s water repelling capabilities nonetheless. So, without further adieu, here are my verdicts on this new Cloudburst model from Showers Pass.

Water beads up from mists on the Cloudburst Jacket
Water beads up from mists and snow on the Cloudburst Jacket

Ride Performance: As Winter faded and Spring came around, I wore this Cloudburst jacket quite a bit as a kind of a windbreaker/soft shell jacket. In fact, this jacket, with its claimed high degree of breathe-ability, became more of an outerwear piece in my mind as I rode more with it. I have a hard time thinking this is a rain jacket. The Cloudburst has stretch, for one thing, and that is rare in a rain jacket. It also has a soft hand feel. That is also rare in rain jackets. In fact, you would not know this was a rain jacket unless it was billed as one. I have tested another Showers Pass rain jacket, a more typical piece for the genre, and it is quite different from the Cloudburst. Same goes for several other rain jackets I’ve tested.

Finally, the Cloudburst’s soft-shell-like qualities continue with its quiet fabric which does not crinkle, or make extra noise when rubbed against itself or on other things like many rain jackets for cycling do. So, it is a weird piece, but pleasantly so, in my view. I love a nice soft shell jacket, and while the fabric might be considered a little on the thin side for cooler weather protection, the Cloudburst does a bang-up job as a windbreaker and yes- it is breathable. Unbelievably so for a rain jacket.

The Cloudburst Jacket as modeled by Guitar Ted
The Cloudburst is surprisingly breathable for rain gear.

So, is the Cloudburst jacket really a rain jacket, or is this just a great soft-shell piece? I would have to wait until just before I posted this final verdict up to really say. I had been in light mists and snow with this on and it did bead up water and it did keep me dry. But what about a ‘real rain’? The kind we get in the Mid-West that sounds like buckets of water being dumped out on the pavement. Well, while it did not quite rain that hard, it rained well enough to have me try and see if the Cloudburst would ‘wet-out’ in a constant rain. That’s when the fabric is essentially overwhelmed and rain penetrates through.

At The Finish: Unfortunately it seems that it didn’t take all that long for it to wet-out. A fairly constant stream off the downspout took all of about five minutes to start to get through slightly. So, what do we have here? In my view, the Cloudburst jacket is going to keep you fairly dry and comfortable in mists, light rains, and fog from around 40°-60°F without your feeling like you are wearing a garbage bag. However, light rain to anything more than that? In my opinion, it is only a matter of time before this jacket gives over and you start getting wet. But that doesn’t make this jacket a bad buy, in my opinion, because I wouldn’t buy it to be a ‘rain jacket‘ despite what Showers Pass may think.

No, this is a perfect light soft-shell piece that is packable and if you can buy it a size larger it could be layered under and be a kind of cold weather piece. I could see the Cloudburst as a long-ride jacket which could be taken on and off depending on the weather in the mountains, or as a quick jacket to throw on for cooler mornings. The vents are there, (be careful with those minimalist zippers on the vents though), and you can keep cooler when you need to. It isn’t much for exterior pockets, but the large, marsupial pocket in the back can hold quite a bit and that zipper works great there. The water repellent characteristics? Consider those a bonus. It wouldn’t be the main reason I’d buy the Cloudburst though.

The Showers Pass Cloudburst Jacket sells for $189.00 USD and can be seen at Showers Pass’ website here; https://www.showerspass.com/products/mens-cloudburst-jacket

Note: Showers Pass sent over the Cloudburst Jacket for test and review to Riding Gravel at no charge. We were not paid, nor bribed for this review and we will always strive to give our honest thoughts and views throughout.

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Guitar Ted

Author: Guitar Ted

Guitar Ted hails from Iowa. Home of over 70,000 miles of gravel and back roads. Co-creator of Trans Iowa in late 2004, he has been at the forefront of the growth of gravel events and riding since then. Creator of Gravel Grinder News in 2008, he produced the premier calendar of gravel and backroad events. GT joined forces with Riding Gravel in late 2014.

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